High on the altiplano between Bolivia, Chile and Argentina, the sky is an impossibly deep blue. The car pulling up was my driver, who played a prank and drove off when I was talking too many photos. It gave the scene a sense of scale, which was perfect. I ended up asking him to do this a few times over the 4 day trip, much to his bemusement.
The dawn of a new day in southern Patagonia. This shot pf the Moreno Glacier was taken a few years back when I was working and travelling around South America. I purchased a lovely Fuji GW690 that took no time at all to get the hang of, along with a huge bag of medium format, 120 roll film all around the continent.
This shot was taken a short while before the sun progressed over the mountainous horizon behind me, illuminating the whole Moreno Glacier in a glorious morning, amber light. Definitely should be a place one’s bucket list to visit and watch sunrise.
In the mountains of Peru, on the road to nowhere, I stood with a friend, surveying the eerie landscape in solitude. We ended up trekking up to 5000m and walking on the glacier you can see in the distance a couple of hours later, when the clouds cleared and the sun bathed the landscape.
I have fond memories of walking up to the glacier above, undaunted by altitude sickness or concerned with the cold. My companion had to remind me that a T shirt at that altitude and level of cold was not in keeping with an efficient circulation.
I will always have fond recollections of the mountains o South America, with Peru, Bolivia and Chile in particular. All were familiar but unique in their own special way.
Bizarrely, both images above is about the size of my negative (6cm x 12cm).
Moon Valley in Chile, close to San Pedro de Atacama, very much lives up to its name. Trekking in the heat of the day at 4000m altitude, in the altiplano, literally took one’s breath away.
I took this shot in the mid afternoon, as the shadows of the canyon cast increasingly longer trails across the exposed spikes of the rock outcrops, akin to the vertebrae of the valley jutting out of the ground.
Back in 2003, after completing a 4 month stint as expedition photographer for Raleigh International in Coyhaique, capital of Region XI in Chile, a few colleagues decided that the best way to end the experience was be to trek Torres del Paine, situated at the southern tip of Chile.
Amongst this ensemble, only three of us were foolhardy enough to attempt the full loop and circumnavigate the entire range. It was April, the very end of the season and all the refugios were being closed down for Winter. Consequently, we had to carry all of our food with us for the multi-day trek ahead.
Temperatures varied from a comfortable 20 degrees Celsius during the day to a chilly minus 20 degrees Celsius at night. We restricted our gear as best we could but our packs stilled weight in at just under 35kg each.
The effort, however, was more than worth it, as we were constantly treated to such beautiful vistas as the one above, with not a soul for miles to break the tranquility. In the end, it took Tom, Bill and I just under 8 days to complete the trek. I eagerly hope to return and do it once again in the future.
Back in 2011, I was on assignment for Lonely Planet in South America, gathering some new shots for their online library. This was taken in the middle of nowhere in southern Bolivia, less than 100 miles form the Chilean and Argentinian borders, close to the Salar de Uyuni. It was late afternoon and the heat of the day in the altiplano desert was rapidly evapourating as the steely grip of night gathered traction.
Temperatures regularly drop to -20 degrees Celsius. That night was no exception.
For the final few weeks of 2010, as the UK was freezing in the mid-winter snow, I was in sunny Argentina, shooting for various image libraries. I have included a few of these images from the various places I visited in late November and early to mid December.
As luck would have it, my flight was one of the very first to make it back into Heathrow, once they were finally able to clear the runway, which was very jammy indeed!
Sailing across the Beagle Channel close to Ushuaia, moment s after a snow blizzard
Walking around the edge of Lago Colorado in the Bolivian Atacama desert
Leap of faith 4,500m up in the Atacama desert
Train graveyard in the Salar de Uyuni, just south of town
Horse riding gaucho style in the hills surrounding Salta, Argentina